Tuesday , 18 December 2018

Jordan Gray: “It’s a Cinderella story”

 

Jordan Gray - The Voice - www.facebook.com/jordangrayofficial
Jordan Gray (Image: BBC The Voice)

 

Jordan Gray is a transgender musician currently taking part in BBC talent show, The Voice.

Jordan impressed the shows judges with her ability but they did not choose her to continue past the first round of auditions. However, luck was on her side when an act from the show had to drop out, giving Jordan a place in the show. She is now heading for the semi-finals this Saturday.

Kaleidoscot caught up with Jordan in an exclusive interview to talk about her music, The Voice and making a difference.

What influenced you to try out for The Voice UK? Friends and fans have told me for years to try out for one of these big TV Talent Shows. For me, The Voice is the one with the most integrity and that means a lot to me.

Have you always been a singer? Always! Croonin’ in my crib! I left college and went straight to into full time touring.

What is your earliest musical memory? I remember finding Michael Jackson’s ‘History’ in my mother’s CD cabinet. My life changed that afternoon.

What music do you enjoy listening to and how would you describe your own style? I listen to a lot of jazz – Charlie Parker, Django Reinhart, Dizzy Gillespie, Duke Ellington. I am a huge Jeff Buckley fan and right now I’m listening to a lot of Alt-J and Radiohead. My own style is piano-based with a kind of wistful, whimsical attitude toward vocals. Since I transitioned it’s got a lot ‘happier’.

Originally no-one turned around (despite an incredible performance) what did you think/feel at that time? It was pretty devastating, I have never cried so much on a train ride home. But those experiences are important. I was proud of that performance and I made my peace with that rejection… and then I got the call.

What events led up to your returning to the show? Another contestant (JJSoulx) left the show for personal reasons and I was drafted back in. A dream come true, if not a little surreal.

What has the Voice experience been like so far? I have been treated like an absolute princess! The entire team are absolute sweethearts and Paloma Faith is a gem to work with. It’s a Cinderella story! I can’t believe we’re almost at the FINAL!

You began your transition into the incredible woman you are today 2 years ago. Did it give you more confidence or influence your music in any way? As a trans person, transitioning improves almost every aspect of your life. My live appearances now feel less ‘manic’ and more about the audience. I want us all to have a great time because I feel great now! It’s much easier to network and connect with fans now that I feel happy with myself and happy in general.

How has your experience been in Scotland as a transgender musician? Despite moving here almost two years ago, I’ve yet to play a gig in Scotland. I see it as more of a vacation home because I spend so much time in London and the south-east of England, but Edinburgh Pride is definitely on the cards for 2016.

What would you say to inspire a young, creative transgender person today? Never ever ever give up. Take nothing personally and nothing for granted.

How do you feel about being a role model through your creativity and passion? I have only ever wanted to do two things with life. Make music and make a difference. I’ve made music now for over ten years and since appearing on The Voice it really does feel like I’ve been given the opportunity to affect positive social change. I love that and I take the responsibility seriously.

What are your aspirations for the future? Everything.

 

The Voice semi-finals air this Saturday on BBC1 at 7pm in the UK.

 

 

About Stuart Russell

Stuart Russell
Stuart Russell BEM BCA is a broadcaster, writer and actor. He is recognised by the Queen and House of Lords for his outstanding contribution to arts in the UK. He is also an Associate Fellow of the Royal Commonwealth Society and is the only LGBTI+ person in Scotland ever nominated for space travel. Stuart is gay and loves creativity, media, positivity, nature, crystals, travel and the ocean.

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